How The Kids Took Over

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In the last 10 years, corporations have doubled what they spend marketing to your children. It’s no wonder. Children influence 62% of family purchases – everything from snack food to cameras to cars. Kids under twelve are at the epicentre of consumer culture.

There is gold in the hills, and marketers know your children will lead the way. So, they spend billions of dollars every year, on the premise that a tug of your heartstrings will mobilize your purse strings. And they’ve unleashed an army of market researchers to help them accomplish their mission. The kids have taken over.

It’s all been made possible through a dramatic shift in parenting style, which has parents dictating less and listening more, and ageneration of under twelve’s that is more numerous and more affluent than the Baby Boomers. This is a marketing culture where companies are moving far beyond traditional boundaries, coining terms like “the infant niche market” and “cradle-to-grave brand loyalty.” Psychologists and anti-marketers have been waving a red flag for years, and now they’re dressing for battle. Meet the players who have helped the kids take over.

How The Kids Took Over , 7.1 out of 10 based on 7 ratings

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  • Gaftoni

    Damn that was one scary documentary. Especially that “craddle to grave brand loyalty” concept, omfg!!! And night clubs for tweens? Come on!

  • AnarchoRationalist

    Yeah it’s disheartening to look at the institutional marketing towards children, but I have supreme confidence that kids are going to adapt well.

    For instance, go to archive.org and listen to some of their old time radio shows, the marketing was way more oppressive then than it is now, but people adapted, particularly the children, the baby boomers who grew up rejecting consumerism and advertising. Of course the advertisers also adapted. It’s evolutionary arms race.

    But look at the advertising towards kids today, it is all about kid empowerment. I think that kids growing up today are going to be far better equipped to deal with their exposure to marketing and to defy it in a creative manner. I have a lot of admiration for those kids, they are going somewhere.

    • Jay M. Almanza

      “.. it is all about kid empowerment.”

      No it is not.

      It is about the generation of sales.

      You are extremely naive.

    • Ttt60

      “it is all about kid empowerment”. Thank you very much that quote has made my day. What a truly laughable idea. interesting line of thinking however, that since kids are being manipulated by advertising daily and giving in to it that they will be better equipped to deal with it later. Again thank you.

    • James

      Do you honestly think that the average child stands even the remotest chance against a wily sales person? Not at all. Kids haven’t become better equipped, they simply nag their parents, because they want it all and they want it now. Children will never change, and that is why they are targetted by companies as highly worthwhile customers.

  • Anonymous

    I find this most interesting. First off the fact that the people with the least money (children) are what you want to target even if your selling a car. Second that 70%, 70% of parents give into nagging?! Really nagging. People truly are spineless not only are they giving into bad behavior they are using positive reinforcement to reward these bad behaviors. Incredible. I would never, never give into nagging. In fact the moment my child nagged I would immediately not give them what they wanted. The fact is if you give a dog a treat for barking the dog will continue to bark. People are not different positive reinforcement works. Third observation on this how rich all these kids parents are. The fact that an 8 year old wants a house! And also the fact that 4 out of 5 vacations are dictated by children who aren’t playing on the beach but in the game room? What was the point of the vacation if your just going to play xbox. Anyway interesting documentary shows just how widespread kidvertising is. You know what they dont tell you though is how they use psychology against us all to sell stuff and children are particularily weak to these sorts of attacks on the mind. I agree marketing needs more regulation in what they can and cant do but not just at kids everyone.

  • Anonymous

    I find this most interesting. First off the fact that the people with the least money (children) are what you want to target even if your selling a car. Second that 70%, 70% of parents give into nagging?! Really nagging. People truly are spineless not only are they giving into bad behavior they are using positive reinforcement to reward these bad behaviors. Incredible. I would never, never give into nagging. In fact the moment my child nagged I would immediately not give them what they wanted. The fact is if you give a dog a treat for barking the dog will continue to bark. People are not different positive reinforcement works. Third observation on this how rich all these kids parents are. The fact that an 8 year old wants a house! And also the fact that 4 out of 5 vacations are dictated by children who aren’t playing on the beach but in the game room? What was the point of the vacation if your just going to play xbox. Anyway interesting documentary shows just how widespread kidvertising is. You know what they dont tell you though is how they use psychology against us all to sell stuff and children are particularily weak to these sorts of attacks on the mind. I agree marketing needs more regulation in what they can and cant do but not just at kids everyone.